Author Topic: Boy,s Model...  (Read 43194 times)

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #30 on: April 03, 2012, 02:45:51 PM »
There was one Religious Education master called Joe Morrison. I suppose you could say he geared his lessons to the Fire and Brimestone side of the scriptures.

Anyway one morning my class filtered into the classroom which Joe was about to vacate. I suppose we had made a rowdy entrance in Joe's estimation and he wasn't too well pleased.
He slipped his wristband watch off and along with his spectacles he placed said  items on his desk. Then with the quiet assurance of a hitman he reached below his desk and came up branishing  a 10 inch piece of angle iron and offered anyone who thought he was hard enough "a square go". The class went silent and I think the general opinion among us was that this man doesn't seem to be playing with a full deck.
At the time Monty Python was very popular and if John Cleese had produced such a scene nobody would even have heard of the Ministry of Silly Walks.

Even after all these years I'm chuckling to myself as I type this.

Sachs, i wouldn't worry about that. It's probably the closest you've ever come to being savaged by a dead sheep. But oh boy, do I remember him?  All those R.E. classes in hut 5. When we got his back turned, we used to throw the Gideon New Testaments all over the place. I remember one being thrown and in mid-flight it bounced off the door as Ernie opened it and walked in.  We were very good at innocent looks, I can tell you. There was one occasion when we'd just finished a woodwork class with Norman Uprichard. We made ornamental fishes on a dowel rod stand and we placed them on the desks in hut 5.  Then, as per usual the New Testament throwing began.  One of the books was well-aimed as it hit the dowel rod of a fish belonging to Paul McMeekin and snapped it clean in two.
 
Wee "Meeky", just like his fish, went to pieces. Sniffle, sob, weep, BOO HOO. MY FISH!  The poor child had to be escorted from the classroom up to the woodwork room again to repair the damage.  Well, everyone in that class just went into a fit of hysterical laughter at Meeky's misfortune. :D   Joe Morrison - he just stood there with a look on his face as if to say, "WTF have I let myself in for?" He didn't know what to do. :-\
 
He would give us tests on our knowledge of R.E. and if you failed them completely, you'd just go like, "So what. I couldn't care less."  He'd do absolutely nothing about it.
 
If you dared to annoy him, he would lose the bap completely and with his cane in his hand he'd shout, "YOU'RE ALL A PACK OF DASTARDS. YOU CAN CHANGE THE FIRST LETTER OF THAT WORD IF YOU LIKE!" 
 
 
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collywobble

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #31 on: April 03, 2012, 03:21:00 PM »
Did anybody go to the Model "country house" - CHURCHILL, out there in the wilds of Fermanagh? I can still smell the musty old bunks, it was pretty in the 7O,S, old then in the 70,s, wonder is it still standing?

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #32 on: April 03, 2012, 05:19:30 PM »
Did anybody go to the Model "country house" - CHURCHILL, out there in the wilds of Fermanagh? I can still smell the musty old bunks, it was pretty in the 7O,S, old then in the 70,s, wonder is it still standing?

I heard some tales of the practical jokes played on boys while they were sleeping in the dorms. You'd wake up with one of your eyebrows shaved off or your face covered in boot polish.
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toadstool999

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #33 on: April 03, 2012, 06:21:35 PM »

I heard some tales of the practical jokes played on boys while they were sleeping in the dorms. You'd wake up with one of your eyebrows shaved off or your face covered in boot polish.

You're lucky it was only your face that got boot polish. That stuff stings!
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #34 on: April 04, 2012, 01:54:48 PM »
One thing I really loathed about the Model was the ridiculous obsession with exams, even to the point where we had to come in on a Saturday morning to do an English exam. One week in 1977 - the year of the Queen's Silver Jubilee, to the best of my knowledge, many other schools were given a whole week off.  The Boys' Model? Two days. Why? Exams. You may call me a hedonist or a sybarite if you wish, but it was no fun sitting indoors swotting for an exam when everyone else is out partying. That really tipped me over the edge. By the third year, I was absolutely fed up with it all.

I utterly detested sitting, shoeless in the sports hall doing one exam after another and listening to Wee Eric complain, "Floor! My preciousss floor! They scuffs it and markses it with shoeses, they does. My preciousss!
 
Bullying? Not only permitted but also actively encouraged.

Unfortunately, there were an insufficient number of good teachers in the school. Others loved dishing out punishment and had special techniques of making caning more painful (plastic tape on the end of the cane being one).
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #35 on: April 04, 2012, 10:46:23 PM »
Jason McCord - nickname "Concord" was quite possibly the worst teacher in that school.  I first heard of him in first form after one of my former primary school clasmates, Michael Lusty came storming out of a classroom shouting, "Who was that idiot? What was he doing? What was he talking about? I'm going to report him!"  One day later, I found out for myself just who and what he was. 

There was talk that he had a balance problem and to compensate, he carried bricks in his briefcase. I don't know about him carrying bricks in his briefcase. Maybe the bricks were for one of his "off the wall" art classes that he was famous for. How to draw tree trunks without taking your pencil off the page; draw your family coat of arms and how to draw a picture using only five lines and so on ad nauseum.

Oscar Wilde once commented "All art is quite useless." This was only true of Jason McCord's artistic tutelage. The all-time classic was that we had to cut a spiral into a piece of card. Punch a hole in the middle and then slap layers of papier mache on the card. When dry, paint it green and put a piece of string through the centre. Pull up the string and it was supposed to look like a mountain...or something. One of my classmates questioned the useful value of this objet d'art. Jason wasn't pleased, "Be quiet. This could be very useful to the geography department!" Aye, right.

He was also famous for interrupting examinations. This used to happen in first and second year when, in the middle of an exam he'd say, "Put your pens down now, I want to tell you something that's very important." He would then spend twenty minutes theorising on the non-existence of the Loch Ness Monster before letting you return to your exam work. If you were the kid in the class whose marks were perilously close to demotion to a lower class, then a lecture on the non-existence of the Loch Ness Monster was about as useful as an ejector seat in a helicopter.  For a number of years now, I've questioned why he was interrupting exams.  Was there a hidden agenda issued from on high to deliberately hold us back or was he doing that of his own volition, out of spite or jealousy perhaps?

He also used to tell us of a boy who started his school career in 1G and finished it in 7A. Believe that and you're extremely gullible.   It couldn't happen for two reasons.
 
1. What is such a smart cookie doing in a G class in the first place?
 
2. Not really possible or practical after 5th year. Class sizes decrease and there's no real point. You're working on your exams in preparation to leave that Hell hole.
 
He left the school in 1980.  And let's face it, he had to go. An inspector from the education board came up and weighed him in the balance and found him wanting. He was given the choice of resignation or the sack. He chose the former.  Imagine, six years it took to get rid of him. For many, that's more than an entire school career.

I last saw him in Strandtown post office, East Belfast in 1993, queing up for his pension.
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #36 on: April 06, 2012, 05:39:34 PM »
The 5D mass beak-off. Monday November 12, 1978.

During the winter of 1978, the school heating system developed problems to such an extent that all classes had to be sent home, except 5th, 6th and 7th years.

This annoyed most of the lads in my class - 5D because the previous year the heating system went down and 4th & 5th years were sent home. We were sent to a room on the upper floor of the McNeilly building. Not that it made much difference as we could see condensation dripping down the walls. Thermometers had been placed in a number of rooms. Mr Currie - who was the union representative came in the room to check the temperature reading. One of us asked Mr. Russell, "Sir, are you going on strike?" His answer was, I'd say, diplomatic. "Boys, we are not going on strike. We are simply going to refuse to teach." That is if the room temperature dropped below a certain level.

Before lunchtime that day, we discussed the matter outside room 15.  There was only one course of action. We decided to walk out in protest at 12.40pm At the time being absent from classes was termed as, "Going on the beak."
I spent the afternoon in town, buying a sceond hand disc from Good Vibrations in Great Victoria Street. I met up with D.P. and Tommy Baker and we went for a dander around Sandy Row.

We were in a lot of trouble next day. We were hauled up in front of Ernie and Jimmy Francey (JImmy Deathbreath), our Year Master. In between unintelligible grunts, we could just about make out the word "conspiracy" from him. Apparently none of the teachers, David Shufflebottom and Dennis Russell included, cared that we'd walked out.  Shuff later said, "I've heard of mass suicide. I've heard of mass genocide. But a mass beak" There was one exception-Mr. McCartney -a history teacher (allegedly), who squealed on us.
 
A search was conducted. They falsely assumed that we were all hiding somewhere in the school.  Ernie decided that we had to report to his office after school for punishment. We all knew what that would be. He even called a special asembly to shout at everyone in the school for things like "Wearing a badge of some stupid pop group!"

We were lined up outside Ernie's office for what we expected to be a caning. But then, he had the look of someone who just couldn't be bothered.  We thought we'd be caned. When Ernie decided to cane you, he wouldn't change his mind. But he did. "Boys, what you did was wrong but I'm prepared to give you the benefit of the doubt and I want you to go quietly home."
 
We waited until we were clear of that school before laughing and cheering at our good luck. 5D had got away with it. :D :)  I wonder who or what made him change his mind. It could well have been a staff revolt. Some of the staff may well have spoken up for us. But I'll never know.

Nobody believed that one class could be so well organised that it would walk out of school. We were told at the time that it was the first time in the history of the school that this happened.
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tboy

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #37 on: April 06, 2012, 08:02:41 PM »
'in the winter of seventy eight we were hungry just barley alive' :D

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #38 on: April 08, 2012, 03:09:36 AM »
You fellas had it too easy. lol    I was at the Model from the age of 8 until I was 15, (Approx. 1950--1958).  Bulldog McNeilly was the principal during that whole period.  Bulldog and Ernie Davies lived close to each other in Cardigan Drive.  There were some very nice teachers at the Model, but there were some, who really shouldn't have been allowed to be near children, period.  Mr Fowler who taught English and had a real passion for cricket, Baggy Johnston who took latin, Mr. Montgomry who took PT, basketball and football; were some of the very good teachers.  Does anybody remember ''Boing Boing Sterling'' who taught French? Old Tommy Morton who was at the Cliftonville road school? Boing Boing used to lift you up from your chair by the short hair in front of your ear; good lord it hurt.  He tried it with Billy McDowell from Alliance Avenue and had to back off  'cos Billy was going to floor him.  Billy could write a sick note better than any mother in Ireland.  Ronnie Conway was one of the best footballers who ever went to the Model.  Big Norman Bisset one of the best singers, Big Bud Abbot was one of the best bouncers, (he would never let me into a cafe on the Antrim Road or the Opher rugby dances, because he said I was a trouble-maker). Venardo from Rutherglen Street, a great schoolmate,  Big Billy Wilton from Wheatfield Gardens.   All the best fellas. 

toadstool999

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #39 on: April 08, 2012, 05:34:45 AM »
You fellas had it too easy. lol    I was at the Model from the age of 8 until I was 15, (Approx. 1950--1958).  Bulldog McNeilly was the principal during that whole period.  Bulldog and Ernie Davies lived close to each other in Cardigan Drive.  There were some very nice teachers at the Model, but there were some, who really shouldn't have been allowed to be near children, period.  Mr Fowler who taught English and had a real passion for cricket, Baggy Johnston who took latin, Mr. Montgomry who took PT, basketball and football; were some of the very good teachers.  Does anybody remember ''Boing Boing Sterling'' who taught French? Old Tommy Morton who was at the Cliftonville road school? Boing Boing used to lift you up from your chair by the short hair in front of your ear; good lord it hurt.  He tried it with Billy McDowell from Alliance Avenue and had to back off  'cos Billy was going to floor him.  Billy could write a sick note better than any mother in Ireland.  Ronnie Conway was one of the best footballers who ever went to the Model.  Big Norman Bisset one of the best singers, Big Bud Abbot was one of the best bouncers, (he would never let me into a cafe on the Antrim Road or the Opher rugby dances, because he said I was a trouble-maker). Venardo from Rutherglen Street, a great schoolmate,  Big Billy Wilton from Wheatfield Gardens.   All the best fellas.

I knew most of those teachers, But who I really remember is Norman Bisset. I didn't know he went to the Model, but I worked with him in The Tech. office, I think he had been a singer with The Silhouettes, and he had a standing challenge with us that he could sing any song that had been in the top 20 in the last 5 years, and we never caught him out. Nice guy, very funny. If you were on the phone with someone and left it down to look something up he would pick up the phone and talk nonsense to the person or make disgusting noises like he was snorting back a nosefull of mucus. 
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #40 on: April 08, 2012, 05:19:19 PM »
Did Ernie get some kind of thrill out of beating boys?  I remember when I was in 5th year and in a school assembly one morning. As usual, Ernie was up on the stage in the central hall and he called out a boy's name, "Is so-and-so here? "Come up here!  Out of that assembly came one boy, I think he was a fourth year.  No joking, everyone in that hall went quiet.  I know its cliched but you could've heard a pin drop.  Apart from that, you could read everybody's mind, "Uh-oh, BEATING!" 

The lad stepped up onto the stage and approached Ernie. We were all ready to see him explode and take a swing at the victim. I saw three children dealt with in that way during assembly during my time there.  I'm glad I was never one of them. That walk up onto the stage must've been like a condemned man's walk to the gallows.

Lo and behold, this boy had done a great deed to promote the school. Whether it was success in sport, academic achievement, saving a life? I don't remember but you hear everyone sigh with relief and were asked to give the guy a round of applause.

Looking back on that, I don't know how scared that boy must've been but it didn't half scare us. But why did Ernie have to put it like that?  From the very beginning he could've been better and even smiled when he called the boy onto the stage.
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #41 on: April 11, 2012, 06:46:11 PM »
A poster on this forum has mentioned that certain teachers would destroy your self confidence. I had mine destroyed alright. How long did it take? Twenty four hours. That's all. After one day, things began to go wrong.
 
New to first year, I was in room 5 and all of a sudden, a tall gangly teacher came in. He was Nial Haslett. He asked my teacher, "May I borrow a boy?" I was singled out and willingly went into room 4, believing that his intentions were honourable (fetch and carry stuff).
 
Once he had me in the room he stood me at the front of the class and said, "What class are you in?"  "1C."  "Some of your class have been writing on the desks in my classroom and you will tell me who they are!"
 
"I don't know. It wasn't me."
 
"What do you mean you don't know?!"
 
"I don't know who's been writing on the desks."
 
"TELL ME WHO WAS WRITING ON MY DESKS!"
 
"i 
 
 
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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #42 on: April 11, 2012, 07:58:39 PM »
Oops, sorry but my internet connection was broken for some reason, I'll post up the rest later.
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Sachs

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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #43 on: April 12, 2012, 12:30:16 AM »
Niall Haslett done the same to our class in first year.
He broke one of the shyer boys and from there 4-5 of us "Messers" were singled out and we had
a lot of explaining to do.
I remember feeling like I was a spy who had been caught behind enemy lines and the firing squad
was waiting for me at dawn.

We had Haslett for the five years I was there. After a while he seemed to give up the Hard Man and
although we never pushed it with him his classes weren't half bad.


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Re: Boy,s Model...
« Reply #44 on: April 12, 2012, 01:09:51 PM »
Apologies for the technical difficulties. As promised, here it is in full.
 
A poster on this forum has mentioned that certain teachers would destroy your self confidence. I had mine destroyed alright. How long did it take? Twenty four hours. That's all. After one day, things began to go wrong.
 
New to first year, I was in room 5 and all of a sudden, a tall gangly teacher came in. He was Nial Haslett. He asked my teacher, "May I borrow a boy?" I was singled out and willingly went into room 4, believing that his intentions were honourable (fetch and carry stuff).
 
Once he had me in the room he stood me at the front of the class and said, "What class are you in?"  "1C."  "Some of your class have been writing on the desks in my classroom and you will tell me who they are!"
 
"I don't know. It wasn't me."
 
"What do you mean you don't know?!"
 
"I don't know who's been writing on the desks."
 
“YOU DO KNOW. NOW TELL ME WHO WAS WRITING ON MY DESKS?
 
He pointed to two desks in the fourth row and indicated they had been written on. What did he want?  I wasn’t omnipresent in space and time and I certainly wasn’t looking over everyone’s shoulder.
 
Add to that, it was convention that we all had to sit in alphabetical order to help the teacher mark the roll.  Adams; Allaway; Beggs; Berardi; Courtney; Crowe; Duddy and so on. So when you work that out, that puts a hell of a lot of desk space between me and the offending vandals. Not that he cared about that. Besides, after twenty four hours in that hell hole, it wasn’t enough time to get to know everyone.  But more than that, there were two other boys in my class who were from the same primary school as I was, so the “tribal bond” with them was still unbroken.
 
“WHERE DO YOU SIT SON?”
 
I went down to my desk, which was in the second row from the right, fourth one back.  With that, you might think he’d give up. Wrong!
 
“I WILL ASK YOU AGAIN, BOY. WHO…WAS…WRITING…ON…MY..DESKS?”
 
I can honestly say that even if my parents had cause to shout at me, it was nothing compared to the persistent shouts of interrogator.
 
At that point, I was reduced a gibbering wreck and I was in tears. I looked about the room and all I could see was a class of second years in a stunned silence. It seemed that this ogre wouldn’t give up and I was broken. At that point, I’d have said anything to get him to stop. 
 
“I think it’s McCormick and McClure, sir.”
 
“WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU THINK? EITHER IT IS OR IT ISN’T!”
 
“Yes, sir.”
 
“GET BACK TO YOUR CLASS!”
 
I went back to room 5 and the next thing I knew, he followed me in.
 
“McCormick and McClure! OUT HERE NOW!
 
I asked myself what was wrong with this school? They caned me for telling the truth about late buses and now they subject me to mental torture over something that had absolutely nothing to do with me.  Great, thanks a lot, Boys’ Model. I picked up my first piece of “emotional baggage”. I considered dumping it and all my other baggage in the corridor and running out the gate, never to return. But weighing up the pros and cons, what choice did I have? Somerdale or Cairnmartin? Out of the frying pan and into the fire.
 
If there’s a way to begin a campaign of vengeful bullying, that’s a good way to start.  One of the above named vandals pushed me down the back stairs in the McNeilly building. I slammed into a wall. If I’d lost my footing, I may have lost my life, never mind my login. In addition, the same bully almost knocked me unconscious in M1 after throwing a sink stopper at me. Same in the library with a heavy book. He also loved to tell lies and squeal on me to Andy McMorran.
 
As for that lanky (insert name here), I last saw him at Aldergrove airport on July 20, 1986. He was waiting to go out on the same flight to Faro as I was.  I didn't speak to him  but I did curse him under my breath.
 
 
 
 
 

 
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